Question for the Investigators (or anyone that knows)

What is the LONGEST periodic investigation you have ever seen? I’m assuming that PRs take longer than initial investigations (at least based on what I’ve seen). So from submission of SF-86 (or from when the investigation is opened) what’s the longest you’ve seen thru adjudication (either clearance approval or denial if it goes to an administrative judge).

Not an investigator here, but I saw a post once back in spring of this year where someone claimed they had been in an investigation for a TS/SCI at an intelligence agency since mid-2015.

Edit: just saw you said periodic. This was for an initial, but I’m leaving the example anyways.

The investigator doesn’t get notified if the case is adjudicated, just notice to erase all reports 30days after the case has been turned over to the requesting agency.

I really don’t recall the longest PR. I know back in 2004-2005 when OPM was cleaning up DSS’ mess, I saw initial SSBIs that had not been started in over four years. I was contacting former service personnel who were already out of the service.

Thanks backgdinvestigator–that makes sense. I’ve been looking through some of the adjudicative decisions and the longest I think I’ve seen is 7 totayears from start to finish. I think on that one it took 4 years for him to receive the SoR after submitting the SF-86.

Seven years, that tells me there was a hang up or two in that individual’s paperwork, history, or records.

I can give a anecdotal reasons why so many cases take so long. It breaks down to being the Subject’s fault (hiding issues, not filling out the SCA correctly, not being where they said they were, not responding to investigators), the process (records not being checked in a timely manner, one required item not being completed for a long time with no one chasing it down, Agencies, police, employers, and listed references not cooperating), investigators (too much work, one or two items in a remote area that can’t be done by phone, distraction while working an expanded case), and the system pumping people in the system without restraint. Usually, it is two or more reasons that cause huge delays.

Common examples I’ve seen:

  1. Subject reports he works and lives in metropolitan city, USA, but the Subject is really working/living in the UAE. Once I caught with him, though email, he stated he reported his “permanent” address and stateside employer address. This case sat until I finally found the Subject (not military - no easy locators) and then was delayed until the overseas department could work the Subject into the case load for a federal agent being sent TDY to that location.

  2. Subject reports he is at Ft Military Base, USA, so the case is quickly assigned to the investigator, who learns the Subject submitted their questionnaire, then PCS’d to Germany (I had several of these last week) within seven days of the military releasing the paperwork to NBIB.

  3. Subject works in a secured facility and doesn’t respond to phone calls, emails, or cards left at their residence. Supervisor doesn’t respond to phone calls or emails. Once I finally get them, usually after a Subject location request which delays the case ten business days, the excuse given is that they didn’t believe NBIB was a real federal agency. (just last week).

  4. Subject reports after a lengthy Subject interview that basically negates all the fieldwork completed before the Subject interview, “I was only given a couple days notice with a quick cheat sheet o fill out the questionnaire.” or “My recruiter told me I didn’t have to report ________.”

These are just a few. There is really no one belly button or log jam that can pushed to suddenly open the background investigation gates. I am one of those that think we really need to rethink the whole process. Such as doing the T3 process before deciding to do the T5. If the issues we find disqualify you for a secret, why do all the additional fieldwork for the T5? Discontinue cases for uncooperative Subjects and let me focus on my other cases. Never let the Subject complete their security questionnaire without a briefing from a trained and knowledgeable security person to ensure all the information is captured initially on the SCA. If someone is gonna lie, they will lie. At least help those that really want to fill out the paperwork correctly.

My case seems fairly complex but that’s just my opinion. My investigator may just be very busy. He told me some other things he may be working on that have priority over me more than likely.

This was the longest SF-86 submission-to-SoR-to-[positive] adjudication I’ve seen so far I think:

“Applicant submitted his most recent security clearance application (SCA) on December 28, 2012. He was interviewed by government investigators on January 29, 2013. After reviewing the information gathered during the background investigation, the DoDCAF issued a SOR on January 14, 2016, alleging security concerns under Guidelines G (alcohol consumption), J (criminal conduct), and F (financial considerations). Applicant answered the SOR on January 27, 2016, and requested a hearing before an administrative judge from the Defense Office of Hearings and Appeals (DOHA).”

The date from the DOHA report/transcript is 26 Feb 2018. That is the longest I’ve seen so far.

I seriously doubt that the long time line for that case was the result of the backlog. It is much more likely that a quick investigation and decision was purposefully avoided in order to allow the issues at hand to play out and then allow the applicant ample time to mitigate those issues.

For example, it is not providing due process to revoke clearance from an applicant based on charges alone. The investigation likely rode out the legal proceedings and waited for a verdict on the charges involved.

Not all long delays are created equal . . .

The universal theme I’ve seen in damn near every case–and I mean almost every one I’ve reviewed–is that the more time between a negative event or events and the adjudication decision, the better but ONLY if those issues have been resolved favorably. But that case is LONG.

If I submitted my SF-86 in mid 2016 and my investigation is still open, I don’t know when this will get closed. At least I currently have a clearance and am working. I don’t know if those have as high a priority as new hires. backgdinvestigator, do some investigators say “this is going to take so much time that my time is better spent elsewhere” and if he screws up, it will just be another nail in the coffin?

New Question–(Im new to this site)

So I was told that my file or case was just released to DHA on the 9/11 and average time to receive ISN is 6 weeks. Is that right? Or could it be a shorter time? I’ve already submitted my finger prints etc. Whats the shortest time you’ve seen someone approved? Are there any indicators that I should look for? I’m so ready to move from current job to my new job just need some encouragement/reassurance while I’m in this holding pattern

Hey! No hijacking the thread! :slight_smile:

Do some searching on this site first–all cases are different and adjudicate on different timelines depending on the specific case. Plus, I’m guessing DoD, DoS, IC, DoE, and DHS will ALL be quirky in their own way.

Ed, I agree with you regarding the case I cited. The late 2012 date makes me think the backlog wasn’t nearly as bad then as it was around the 2015-2017 timeframe.

The full case/transcript link is here:

Case complexity+backlog +other factors= you have no idea how long the process will take

I just don’t know what would make them determine to drag there feet on this applicant since he was arrested 7 times between 2000 and 2011 (eqip submitted 2012).
It appeared that the arrests were more serious as time went on, 2011 arrest was for extreme DUI (bac .20+). I’ve seen alot less serious cases that don’t get favorably adjunicated with part of the reason being that not enough time has passed between the incident and the date of the hearing. Just seems questionable/odd.

My bad…thanks for info